Biden's meeting with Israeli prime minister to keep spotlight on Afghanistan, terrorist threats to allies

Biden's meeting with Israeli prime minister to keep spotlight on Afghanistan, terrorist threats to allies

August 25, 2021

Farage: Britain would ‘no way’ show military cooperation with America led by Biden admin

Former Brexit party leader slams the president’s administration for the situation in Afghanistan and argues the U.K. is not willing to ‘enter another operation’ with the United States.

President Biden’s upcoming meeting with new Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is likely to center on the escalating crisis in Afghanistan, as well as other emerging threats to the U.S. and its allies due to the rise of terrorism in the region, experts predict. 

Biden is set to hold a meeting at the White House Thursday with Prime Minister Bennett, the first in-person meeting between the two leaders. In a statement last week, White House press secretary Jen Psaki had said tensions with Iran are expected to be a focus of the discussion.

“The President and Prime Minister Bennett will discuss critical issues related to regional and global security, including Iran,” said Psaki in a statement announcing the meeting. “The visit will also be an opportunity for the two leaders to discuss efforts to advance peace, security, and prosperity for Israelis and Palestinians and the importance of working towards a more peaceful and secure future for the region.”

However, in the days since the White House announced the visit, Biden’s foreign policy credibility with allies and adversaries has taken a deep dive due to the botched withdrawal of U.S.-led NATO troops from Afghanistan. 

Former national security experts are saying that Biden’s meeting with Bennett will be a true test for the future of the close alliance between the countries, including how they will jointly combat aggressive nations toward Israel in the region and the rise of terrorism. 

Rich Goldberg, Vandenberg Coalition Advisory Board member and former director for Countering Iranian Weapons of Mass Destruction for the National Security Council (NSC) under President Trump, told Fox News that the already “difficult” meeting between the two leaders got more complicated after the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.

“This was already going to be a difficult meeting, with Biden determined to rejoin the Iran nuclear deal and flood Tehran with cash. But Biden’s surrender of Afghanistan to the Taliban raises new questions in Jerusalem: Will Biden cede Iraq and Syria to Iran by withdrawing U.S. forces there too? And would he ever be willing to use the military option to deny Iran a nuclear weapon?”

The implications of the U.S.-led withdrawal from Afghanistan are not limited to neighboring states and, more broadly, is likely to impact the United States’ relationship with its allies, including Israel, experts told Fox News.

Boris Zilberman, Christians United for Israel’s (CUFI) director of public policy and strategy, told Fox News in an interview that Biden’s upcoming meeting with Prime Minister Bennett will be a crucial opportunity for the leaders to strategize about how to deal with emerging threats because “what happens in Afghanistan does not stay in Afghanistan.”

Zilberman stated, “The reason the meeting with Biden and the prime minister this week is really critical is, for the Israelis, how do you deal with the incoming threats that could be coming in the wrong direction. They’re increasing and not diminishing. And there is more of them. I think those are all things Israel is going to be looking to Washington for help with.”

The meeting is likely to include a request for assistance from Bennett to replenish the Iron Dome “and other kinds of advanced weaponry [Israel] may be looking for to be able to fight to these terrorist groups,” Zilberman said.

Elliott Abrams, who served as special assistant to the president and NSC senior director for the Near East and North Africa under President George W. Bush, and as deputy NSC adviser, told Fox News that the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan weakened the U.S. in the eyes of Arab states as an “unreliable protector.”

“The Taliban takeover will reinforce the Abraham Accords, because Arab states will see the United States as an unreliable protector. The value of Israel as a partner who is reliable isn’t leaving the region, and will fight for its interests will be enhanced.”

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